Putty power: elementary students raise funds for RSS


Turning slime into pencils, an unlikely connection that began as a student-led venture, morphed into a successful fundraiser at Lewiston-Altura Elementary School this month. Third-grade teacher Barb Daley learned of a group of four students who were interested in capitalizing on the much-hyped slime trend, and talked to them about donating their proceeds from sales to a good cause.

“We brainstormed different ways to help kids in our community,” said Daley. “[Ready Set School’s] Donut Day had just ended, so it was fresh in our minds. The girls wanted to give back to their community and help other kids in our school.”

Ready Set School (RSS) is a nonprofit organization that works to ensure that all Winona County children have the necessary school supplies and/or clothing for school. RSS is funded by private, public, and business donations, and all funds raised go directly to area families to purchase school supplies and clothing. The program distributed more than 600 vouchers to local students in 2018 — over $40,000 in assistance.

Students Sophia Erickson, Alyssa Hanson, Teagan Hartman and Hailey Larson mixed batches of slime before and after school, and packaged them in three sizes. Fresh containers of slime were made available for students to purchase for four days, with lines of eager customers filling the hallways each day.

“During the first three sales, we sold every container within 10 minutes,” said Daley. “Slime is the rage! They love playing with it and making ‘bubbles’ with their friends. When I walk by classrooms during their free time, many students are playing with the slime.”

The impromptu fundraising team raised $393.35 for RSS, all through the power of putty. In addition to the success of the sale, the students learned some valuable entrepreneurial lessons.

The girls said they realized the importance of making, and keeping, the customer happy, and when demand rose, extra time and effort needed to be given to maintain inventory.

“We are thankful for each of the students at Lewiston-Altura Elementary School for using creativity and dedicating their time and energy to an important cause in our county,” said RSS Director Mandi Olson.

Ready Set School’s main fundraising drive concludes on May 31 for 2019-2020 vouchers, and applications for assistance are being accepted now through May 31 by going to readysetschoolwinona.org. If you’re interested in contributing to these funds, click on the “DONATE” page or contact Olson at readysetschool@gmail.com for more information.


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